Shiraz's blog

Unforced errors

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I suppose it's inevitable that eventually I would make a boo boo that required an already-published chapter to be edited in such a way as the story changes, or at least one aspect of the story. I mixed up two characters' histories and simply changing the name wasn't an option. This made me wonder, how do I prevent this from happening again? The short answer is that I can't, an unforced error is just that.

Delays to Tammy's Trials

An apology to those waiting for Tammy's adventures (and there are plenty of them to come) but I'm engaged in a complete rewrite of Chapter 31 and now see that I've made a boo boo in Chapter 30, by mixing two characters up. That's going to require a partial rewrite to fix as it can't simply be explained away.

It's all going to take some time and I'm hoping RL keeps itself at bay.


Broadband issues

I'm having broadband problems again as my fibre went down sometime last night pb (post Bike). I've spent time today, after teaching my over 50s IT class, trying to fault find but right now have no outside world connection using that route although my internal network is still up. That much is useful as my scribblings are not stored on the laptop that I use for writing, all my work is stored on the big beastie (12Tb of storage).

Timeline problem

I have over 3000 words of Chapter 16 of Tamara's Trials ready to roll, It's been edited, re-edited and re-re-re-edited but I can't use it, yet!

The Tammy stories are written against dates and the chapter written for Monday 26th Jan should be 2nd Feb! So, I have nothing ready for Chapter 16 as of 1430 GMT, the chapter already written will become number 21 or 22 or 23 etc, eventually!

Can I manage 2000 words plus in the next few hours? Let's see!


A Scottish ferry ride

I occasionally make reference to the weather in Scotland, where the Tammy stories are set, but regardless of how well weather can be described in writing, nothing beats a video.

This was filmed on 9th of Jan and is the ferry between the Orkney Isles and Scrabster, about 4 miles from Thurso. Have your paper bags ready!

Odd few days


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I've been feeling a bit down recently, partly post-Christmas blues, partly no work coming in, partly money's tight.

When I last had a major downer, when I was going through divorce and child custody issues, I wrote. That was when, in 2008, some of my stories started and many of the story threads I imagined are now being written into something coherent.

Happy New Year

Happy New year to everyone, whichever time zone you find yourself in.

I rejoined BCTS during 2014 having been absent for a while. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time back here and love the community atmosphere. I hope my stories have contributed too, having concluded two in the past week.

My aim is to be a better author in 2015, and a better person too.

Love and hugs to all


Unaccounted Gains book 2 has now concluded slightly sooner than originally intended but concluded nonetheless after 32 chapters, making the story so far 72 chapters long, I have no idea of the wordcount as yet! It will now have a break whilst I concentrate on Tammy's story. I'm not completely happy with the next chapter of Tamara's First Christmas so there will be some rewriting before it's published.


Family 'contact' after divorce

As many will know, I separated from my ex in 2008 but was able to gain custody of my (then 9yo) daughter in 2010. Since then I have made best efforts to maintain contact between my daughter and her maternal family, albeit within the limits of a restrictive court order.

Tammy's continuing story

As I said a week and a half ago, Tamara's Debut ends with the next posting. Writing for the next installment (Tamara's First Christmas) has now reached 40,000 words but I want to finish it before I start posting so there will be a gap. In story terms, however, Debut finishes on December 12th and the Xmas story starts on December 13th.

What I have not yet decided is how to release it, whether one day at a time, in cliche cliffhanger (ie Bike) style, or as a novel. Debut, as a completed story is 108,000 words and I'd expect Xmas to be a similar size.

Tommy & Tamara series continuation

I've just posted chapter 17 of Tamara's Debut, due to editing that series will end on Chapter 24. Most of what was Chapter 25 now forms the intro into Chapter 1 of Tamara's First Christmas. As of now 20,000 words for that series have been written and posting will commence shortly after 'Debut' concludes, the story as written is now many thousands of words beyond where I left it in 2010.

New or revised?

Here's an update on my stories:

Unaccounted Gains Book 2 is continuing with a posting schedule of every 2 days (ish). It is brand new, never published elsewhere.
Tamara's Debut has 25 chapters and was first published in 2009/2010 on BCTS. It has been revised and re-edited prior to republication.
Eve Book 2 contains some material from earlier publication but is mostly new, I haven't decided when it will be published yet as I don't want to be posting more than two series at the same time.


The sharp-eyed amongst you may already have noticed some logo changes for the Eve & Unaccounted Gains series as each is now displaying Book 1. The Series page has been suitably modified with a new uber organisational page created, There is also now an Eve 2 page awaiting content, as a teaser.

What this means is that both Eve & Gains will be finishing soon in their Book 1 guise. One or both may take a break whilst I work on republishing Tammy, starting with the Hallowe'en special.


Unaccounted Gains etc

The next chapter of Unaccounted Gains, number 30, may take a day or two as I've deleted a 1000 words from the draft chapter and commencing a rewrite. Unfortunately I wrote myself into a corner that would have taken a miracle to get out of. It was a shame as the dialogue was pretty snappy.

Eve reposts will continue on a 1 or 2 day basis until Book 1 ends, then there will be a break until book 2 starts.

There's no timescale for Tammy to be reposted as yet but I might produce a few standalones as time permits.


More on stories

It's been a little strange going back over stories I wrote 5 years ago and hadn't looked at for 2 years. Whilst I can remember the Eve plot, some of the chapters surprise me when I read them, prior to editing & revision. Of course, that does help the grammar checking as it's not a very familiar text.

I'm running several chapters ahead with Eve, but as I warned earlier the chapter numbers have changed.

Stories update

Eve is being extensively revised and my re-editing is running a few chapters ahead of publishing at the moment. The chapter numbers will no longer tally with the previous publication of Eve. Book 2 is planned but not written. That might be an autumn/winter project.

Unaccounted Gains is a side project that will appear irregularly. Tammy requires plenty of work before I see it fit again, although Gabi was my editor first time around so the spelling should be okay!


Child support (again)


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I last wrote two years ago about my quest for my ex partner to pay maintenance for our daughter, who lives solely with me. In the past two years several calls have been made to the Child Support Agency but the situation remains the same. Today's call confirmed that there are no employment/tax records nor current benefits claims, so she has no liability to pay until one of these conditions is met.

First story re-posted

I've just published "Human Resources" which first appeared on BCTS in 2011 as "Martha". There's been a major edit/revision of the original text. I'm not sure which of my stories will get the edit treatment next, perhaps even a new one? I'm afraid Eve & Tammy will have to wait a while, especially if there are any new chapters in the pipeline.


Start again?

I decided last night to re-establish myself with BC-TS and everyone here. What I am thinking of doing is to dust off some of my old stories, re-edit them into better English, and re-post them. That is not a quick process as I have over 250,000 words across several series of stories to tackle.

For anyone who had my email address, it hasn't changed (as a certain lady from Oz has confirmed)


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